Monday March 28, 2011
With the first in our series of brand new one-day training courses on Social media for internal comms taking place on 6th April, I caught up with session leader Tracy Playle of Pickle Jar Communications to ask her a couple of questions on the subject. Here’s part one of what she had to say…
I started by asking Tracy what the benefits are of using social media to communicate with internal audiences....
Tracy Playle: Social media can offer a quick and effective way of communicating with internal (and any) audiences, providing that they are online or have internet access on a mobile device. Most importantly, however, social media enables internal audiences to have their own voice and it helps to facilitate collaboration and cross-organisation thinking and sharing of ideas and solutions. In social media spaces you can organize yourself around different themes and groups that transcend internal management structures. This is no longer about top-down, one-way communications, and not even really about two-way communications. Now, it’s about multi-way communications. Importantly, it is also by its very nature ‘conversational’, so it can help to break down the formality of other forms of internal communication and make staff and other internal stakeholders feel more ownership of it and of the subjects discussed.
So what are social media’s failings? Does it have any?
TP: This is a little bit like asking what the failings of a conversation are… it’s a tricky one to answer. In truth, social media itself doesn’t have any failings – but the people using it, and how they choose to use it, may have many. The biggest one that I see over and over again is organisations using social media as just another ‘channel’ to push their messages out. But it’s not a channel. Typically, it’s a community. You wouldn’t walk up to a group of people having a chat in a pub and just start spurting out messages to them, so likewise you shouldn’t do this in social media.
Find out more and book for Tracy’s social media for internal communication course on 6th April.